I think one of the most overused buzzwords in the beauty industry is ‘HG’ AKA Holy Grail. When I first came across this term a few years ago I was a bit confused by it. I mean I was still fresh and a total n00b so I still associated the term with, like, religious imagery and stuff. Anyway, HG is supposed to be the term you use to describe the makeup product that is, like, your One True Love, your ride or die, your Main Chick, et cetera et cetera.
There are a few makeup products that usually get conferred HG status by magazines and the like, causing everyone to rush out and buy them. I’ve tried a couple, and tbh 9 times out of 10 they end up just… okay. If not downright disappointing (Laura Mercier Tinted Moisturizer, I’m looking at you! Oily mofo). In my (roughly) 6 years of experience as a Beauty Overspender, I think I must have found about… two Holy Grail items.
And I’m about to tell you about one of them! Meet A’Pieu Dark Diminish Cream, or DD Cream if you’re nasty.
I know we’ve all heard about BB Creams, and since then the beauty industry has tried to make CC, DD, EE whatever creams happen as well to varying degrees of success. They keep insisting that each alphabet cream serves a different ‘purpose’ but honestly? To me they’re all the same. They’re flipping foundation! Even your regular, run-of-the-mill foundation is able to ‘colour correct’, you don’t need to buy a damn CC Cream for that.
So anyway where was I? Yeah, so I originally got this DD Cream as a sample from Roseroseshop after buying some skincare. They always send these really random brands as samples (except one time when I got like a TON of Cosrx samples, I die) so yeah this was one of them.
“What kind of name is A’PIEU?” I snickered. Is it supposed to be French? I barely passed French myself (the only thing I got from French class is to pronounce ‘ment’ as ‘mon’, so now even English words like ‘entitlement’ get pronounced ‘entitle-mon’ in my head). So I’ve been pronouncing this brand as A-pew.
This item has got to be one of the most pleasant surprises OF MY LIFE! I really wasn’t expecting ANYTHING when I first ripped open the sachet and applied it with my fingers. First of all, the shade is a lot better than most Korean foundations I’ve tried. Korean brands are notorious for being piss poor at shade selections for darker skinned people but even if you have the prerequisite light skin the choices still aren’t so good— Korean foundations tend to be grey! Like forget the argument “Well they only make light shades because it’s for Koreans”, these brands are manufacturing products only for the grays!
But the A-pew DD Cream is actually the colour of human skin! The shade I have is in Natural Beige and while it might not be the most perfect colour match in existence, I don’t have to stretch my imagination too far to convince myself that it’s a match. Like I said, it isn’t grey and is actually the colour of skin, so if you’ve got a skin tone which is roughly like mine you should be able to wear it without much issue.
The next thing that I love about this foundation is that it doesn’t catch on any dry patches that I might have. There are some foundations which I HAVE to apply with a damp sponge, because otherwise it gets stuck to and emphasises every damn flake and dry patch that I have. Well, not this one. Not only am I able to apply it with just my fingers (a process that I’m appreciating more and more lately. Applying your foundation with just your fingers is trés minimalist, non?) but I am even able to put it on just bare skin— no moisturiser or anything— and it will STILL blend in nicely. Not that I make it a habit to choose makeup over skincare.
Finish-wise, I’d say it’s velvet. Not glowy or shiny—but I’m hesitant to refer to it as a ‘matte foundation’ since I, being of a certain generation, define ‘matte’ as being ‘the COMPLETE ABSENCE OF ANY SHINE WHATSOEVER’. This isn’t Instagram-level matte, it just doesn’t purposely provide a glow the way most Korean foundations do. It just looks like skin, is what I’m saying. Anyway, I’m a glowy skin extremist, so I usually put aside any foundation which doesn’t make my face shine bright like a diamond but this is the exception for me— now that I’ve kicked my acne problem to the curb, the main issue I have with my skin is unevenness. I have darkness around my eyes and mouth area (and I’m not talking about dark spots, just darkness in general. Like the skin there is duller and more sallow than the rest) so, as the A-Pew Dark Diminish Cream’s name suggests, this product is able to combat that and make my face look noticeably smoother and brighter than usual. And yes, this has been confirmed by a third party so it’s definitely not just my delusion talking.
Just the foundation on and I’m looking human! Any rough edges can be fixed with concealer.
Finally, it lasts a good amount of time without getting oily. I’m not an oily person myself but I do get extreme shine on my T-Zone after a couple hours (this might be due to the fact that I almost exclusively wear moisturising, ‘glowy’ base and also because I kind of don’t like powder) but not with this foundation. It gets slightly glowier as the day goes by and it mixes with your natural oils but, at least for me, it never turns heavy and greasy.
I liked the sample so much that I heavily considered buying a full sized bottle for myself but I kept delaying it ‘cause you know international shipping and jscnlnxqkp. But then, hey look, Hermo suddenly started selling A’Pieu products and HEY LOOK the DD Cream is available! Place in cart. Purchase. Furiously wait for delivery man to arrive. And now I have my own bottle!
Do YOU want your own bottle?! A’Pieu Dark Dimish Cream is available at Hermo for RM55 (okay it was RM48 when I bought it…) (yah I buy everything from Hermo).